Zulu Princess Virgin Test
Zulu Women get in line for virginity check
Ukuhlolwa Kwezintombi –
Zulu Virgin Test
& Reed Dance
I read in the Los Angeles times about Scholarships being awarded to 16 female university students, with the condition that then keep their virginity….those who received the scholarship would get tested as part of an annual Zulu ceremony, where virgin girls and women are pre-selected to perform a reed dance for King Goodwill Zwelithini. Learn More @ BBC.com
In Zulu culture, virginity testing is traditionally performed by older women, who inspect a young woman or girls vagina for signs of an intact hymen – the membrane of skin the covers a woman’s vaginal opening at birth. If the hymen is not broken, it means that the woman/girl has not had sexual intercourse. Virginity testing … is still widely practised, especially around the time of the annual Zulu reed dance in KwaZulu Natal. Only girls who have been certified as virgins can participate in the reed dance.
In Zulu culture, there is a tradition in which girls of a certain age can perform a dance for the king. However, only virgins are allowed to participate. If a girl is tested and declared a virgin, she brings honor to her family.
A virginity test is the practice and process of determining whether a girl or woman is a virgin; i.e., whether she has never engaged in sexual intercourse. The test involves an inspection of the hymen, on the assumption that it can only be torn as a result of sexual intercourse. Many researchers state that the presence of an intact hymen is not a reliable indicator of whether a female has been vaginally penetrated because the tearing of the hymen may have been the result of an involuntary sex act, such as rape, or other event.
So-called virginity testing, also referred to as hymen, two-finger, or per vaginal examination, is the inspection of the female genitalia to assess if the examinee has had or has been habituated to sexual intercourse. The two most common techniques are inspection of the hymen for size or tears, and two-finger vaginal insertion to measure size of the introitus or laxity of the vaginal wall. Both techniques are performed under the belief that there is a specific appearance of genitalia that demonstrates habituation to sexual intercourse [1, 2]. reproductive-health-journal.biomedcentral.com * wikipedia.org/Virginity_test *
When asked how they conduct virginity inspection, … the knowledge is “sacred to us. We do not want to unlock things that are so sacred to us”. She only divulged that “we do it practically with gloves and icansi (grass mat)”. After the testing, the girls that are “pure” are given certificates to prove their status as virgins,
the (ihlo) eye – sometimes translated as the hymen – that is inspected, and how this is said to be covered by a piece of flesh (the umhlumbi), the presence of which indicates that the girl is still a virgin.”
Other signs that show that a young woman is still a virgin, according to the inspectors, include tight muscle tone, firm buttocks and breasts and a flat abdomen. The inspectors also claim to be able “to identify whether a girl is a virgin or not simply by looking at her as she walks by”,
How the testers grade young women
To achieve an “A” grade “the color of the labia should be a very light pink, the size of the vaginal opening should be very small, the vagina should be very dry and tight, and the white dot or white lacy veil (hymen) should be clearly evident and intact”. Additionally, the girl’s eyes should “look innocent” and she should have a firm body.
Those who are classified as “B” grade virgins have labia that “are a deeper shade of pink than those of the ‘A’ grade virgin, the vaginal opening slightly bigger, the vagina not so tight, and the vaginal walls slightly lubricated. The white dot and lacy veil are said to show evidence of ‘being disturbed’ ”. However, the testers are not clear as to what this exactly looks like, Leclerc-Madlala wrote.
Those awarded a “B” grade are thought to have had penetrative sex once or twice, or “may have been abused” but are still issued with a certificate. However, those who have been sexually abused repeatedly are more likely to be given a “C” grade.
Other young women who are relegated to the “C” grade have a “vagina that is ‘too wide and too wet’. No evidence of a white dot or veil can be found, and the girl’s eyes betray her as someone ‘who knows men’.”
Virginity testing not a reliable way of determining virginity
While virginity testing is a traditional practice in Zulu culture, it is not an exact science. Examining the physical attributes or the vagina of a young woman is not a reliable way to determine virginity for a number of reasons.
Firstly, traditional testing relies on certain physical attributes such as “looking innocent” and muscle tone to prove virginity, which are very subjective forms of observation.
In the second place, the hymen is not a reliable indicator of virginity because it differs in each woman, is not present in every woman, can remain intact after penetrative sex and can be eroded over time due to physical activities or the insertion of tampons. africacheck.org/virginity-testing-sacred-but-not-a-science
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Resources & Links
Africa Check – Virginity is “sacred, but not a science 2.10.2016
Picture from wikipedia.org/Vagina
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